Canadian Accountant Caught Buying Nearly $7 Million Worth of iPhones and iPads With Company Credit Card

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Apr 5, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    The National Post has shared the story of a Canadian accountant who was caught after buying nearly $7 million worth of iPhones and iPads with her company credit card and reselling them to the owner of a small electronics store.

    Ian Gavan/Getty Images

    Nadia Minetto, who was as an accounting manager at Mississauga-based software company Wescom Solutions, started buying thousands of Apple products with her company-issued American Express card in 2011. It had been her job to approve business expenses for all employees, so her spending went unnoticed.

    Over the next two and a half years, the Ontario Superior Court found that Minetto sold 5,321 iPads and 4,942 iPhones to businessman Gabriel Fung, who in turn sold them at his store Plus One Solutions in the Toronto area and to wholesalers in Hong Kong, turning a profit of just over $1 million.

    Fung first met Minetto after responding to her ad for an iPad on Kijiji, a popular Craigslist-like classifieds site in Canada. Their transactions eventually became more elaborate, often involving 10 to 20 devices at a time, ultimately leading to bulk shipments to the address of a virtual business set up by Fung.

    The scheme came to an end in July 2014, when consultant Kristine Pacy discovered spending irregularities as Wescom was contemplating becoming a publicly traded company. The court determined that at least $6,831,834 of Wescom's money was misappropriated dating back to May 2009.

    Minetto admitted to her actions and, in October 2014, she consented to a judgment in the amount of $6,831,834.17 plus interest. Wescom also won a judgment for more than $5 million against Fung, but he was awarded his cross claim for the same amount against Minetto, potentially reducing his amount owed.

    This week, an Ontario appeals court dismissed Fung's appeal over his judgment.

    Article Link: Canadian Accountant Caught Buying Nearly $7 Million Worth of iPhones and iPads With Company Credit Card
  2. AkuskaUK macrumors 6502


    Mar 18, 2011
    Shanklin, Isle Of Wight
    Ohhhh, Naughty!

    (Gimme a cheap new Mini)
  3. Relentless Power macrumors Penryn

    Relentless Power

    Jul 12, 2016
    If this company was properly/thoroughly audited (Especially with a credit card), Nadia would’ve have been caught much earlier on to stop her antics. A lot of companies are audited once, if not twice a year with any external expenses with company credit cards.
  4. avanpelt macrumors 68030

    Jun 2, 2010
    That card must've had one hell of a high credit limit. Even though the devices were purchased over a period of two and a half years, 7M worth of purchases is staggering.
  5. subjonas macrumors 68000

    Feb 10, 2014
    At $7M (and probably climbing), how did she think this was going to stay unnoticed?
  6. JetTester macrumors 6502

    Feb 12, 2014
    Criminals always think they can't possibly be caught. And they are usually wrong. In this case, there was just too much evidence for it not to be discovered. A proper audit system would have caught it much quicker, though.
  7. LogicalApex macrumors 6502

    Nov 13, 2015
    Amex charge cards don't have credit limits.
  8. thisisnotmyname macrumors 68000


    Oct 22, 2014
    known but velocity indeterminate
    It's amazing the lax policies and controls in place in so many organizations. People like to think this couldn't happen in their own organization but in many cases they'd be wrong.
  9. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    People don't see the bigger picture when they're doing stuff like this. It begins with one or two purchases a month. Then a few a week. Then you really think you can get away with it and becomes the norm. "Oh, time to boost this month's paycheck."

    You get overconfident. Purchase in bulk, lose perspective, and get sloppy.

    Before you know it, you've racked up 7 million dollars.
  10. radio893fm macrumors regular

    Aug 11, 2004
    I spent 40 in gas last week and there was turmoil in my company... I need to talk to Nadia.
  11. jicon macrumors 6502

    Nov 29, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    I was reading this story this morning. She had some sort of deal with the company who would forgive her repaying back the money... Selling back Mercedes and Audi cars, but, as it shows, 10K gift to a family friend here, Raptors season tickets, and vacation for her and friends to Vegas. Out of control.
  12. rdowty macrumors 6502a


    Oct 5, 2008
  13. zorinlynx macrumors 603


    May 31, 2007
    Florida, USA
    I don't understand how people can think they can do this sort of thing and not eventually get caught.

    Someone always eventually looks at the books and will find there's money missing. It's the entire basis of accounting.
  14. Relentless Power macrumors Penryn

    Relentless Power

    Jul 12, 2016
    Addiction, thrill, the thought of being invincible, ect. And the biggest thing, is being overconfident that this female employee thought she had the upper hand being an account manager. Still completely baffles me that they did not have an outside source conducting an audit at least once a year, which would’ve detected this much earlier on.
  15. flyinmac macrumors 68040


    Sep 2, 2006
    United States
    Well there goes 7 million dollars in future sales for Apple. :D

    I’m sure the potential end-users will still likely buy phones. But if this scheme was based on reduced prices to move the phones, then those more umm... “budget minded” target buyers will probably be out of the market.

    It sounds like it was a purchase at retail at someone else’s expense, then sell cheaper since she had no actual out of pocket expenses to make the initial purchase.

    Otherwise, her profit would have matched or exceeded the 7 million dollars. If she only made 1 million, she was selling them considerably cheaper than the price her employer paid for them.
  16. CarlJ macrumors 68030


    Feb 23, 2004
    San Diego, CA, USA
    So... she embezzled 6.8 million dollars, she got caught, and the punishment for her crime is, she has to pay back the 6.8 million dollars? There are a lot of people doing hard time for lesser crimes who would love to get that sort of a deal.
  17. now i see it macrumors 68040

    Jan 2, 2002
    while a shoplifter stealing food to eat goes to jail
  18. Raid macrumors 68020


    Feb 18, 2003
    I'm kind of disappointed that this store isn't in Pacific Mall. I mean they have a reputation to adhere to.
  19. cube macrumors P6

    May 10, 2004
    He could have bought 77 bottles of champagne at a Miami nightclub instead.
  20. avanpelt macrumors 68030

    Jun 2, 2010
    The article doesn't say explicitly that it was an Amex charge card. It says it was a 'company credit card' and then later refers to it as simply an 'Amex card'. Are Amex credit cards not available in Canada? Here in the U.S., we have both Amex charge cards and Amex credit cards -- the former having no limit and the latter having a limit.
  21. dlucks macrumors newbie


    Jul 7, 2007
    So when Tim says iPads and iPhones have been selling like hotcakes....
  22. r.d macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2007
    Mississauga, ON
  23. theonekcrow macrumors 6502a


    Jul 12, 2009
    I agree with this statement though with a twist... If this company was private at the time of the fraud, they may not necessarily be a requirement by the government to be audited, so there is a failure point there.

    This is more so an issue of a lack of internal controls, as she is the accounting manager that oversees everyone’s credit cards, she should not have been allowed to oversee her own. Her charges should have been reviewed by the CEO, CFO, Controller, or some supervisor above her.
  24. Mousse, Apr 5, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2019

    Mousse macrumors 68000


    Apr 7, 2008
    Flea Bottom, King's Landing
    When you're the ONLY bean counter at a company and the boss doesn't ask questions, it's easy to embezzle. Any bean counter worth hiring would have had 3 sets of books: one for the tax man:p, one for the boss:cool: and one with actual tally.;)

    Accounting ethics, bruh. It's like a situation where client pays, in cash, a $1000 bill. And when I count it it comes out to $1100 in cash. You would think ethical question is, "Do I tell the client?" But you'd be wrong.:eek::confused: The ethical question is, "Do I tell my boss.":D:D:D
  25. itsmilo macrumors 68020


    Sep 15, 2016
    I could probably do that too. They got rid of our sales department so everyone has to approve basically everything themselves and I get random invoices that i wasn’t even involved in cuz my boss doesn’t know how to use the software or it’s invoices that were not even meant for me

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